William Blake Archetypes

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Connecting from one to Another
(A critique of William Blake’s archetypes)

“Archetypes provide foundations to build on and allow endless variety” (Gibson). William Blake in his Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience has a few main archetypes in these poem. Blake’s poems have a tendency to move from the simple to the complex. In The Lamb by William Blake this poem is about lambs, where the speaker asks the lamb who made him, then informs the little lamb in the last stanza who made him. This poem has a lot of repetition and uses childlike language, which places it in Songs of Innocence. In The Tyger by William Blake this poem belongs to Songs of Experience and asks the question of who would create such a terrifying creature as the tiger. Also, this poem asks whether the same creator made the lamb. This poem informs the reader of what purpose tigers serve in nature; Tigers instil fear and keep nature in check. The Chimney Sweeper by William Blake is about a young boy who is sold to be a chimney sweeper by his father, after his mother passed away. At the time, there were no child labor laws. In Infant Sorrow by William Blake, is about a child that is born into poverty and the infant feels that he is a burden to his parents; started being a burden to his parents from birth on. Not a happy birth for the infant, which lands this poem in Songs of Experience. An archetype is an action, idea, or character that represents something more than itself, often has a universal meaning
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